|Multi Request||Challenge Coin design|
|Submitted||May 9, 2018|
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To Whom It May Concern:
Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:
Records relating to the design of challenge coins, including guidelines, policies, proposed, accepted and rejected designs, as well as discussion, deliberation, and debate about possible designs and design policies.
I am a member of the news media and request classification as such. I am freelance writer who has previously written about the government and its activities for MuckRock, Motherboard, Unicorn Riot, AND Magazine and Glomar Disclosure. My articles have been widely read, with some reaching over 100,000 readers. My work has been further discussed in outlets including the New York Times, the Washington Post, and BBC. As such, as I have a reasonable expectation of publication and my editorial and writing skills are well established. In addition, I discuss and comment on the files online and make them available through the non-profit Internet Archive, disseminating them to a large audience. While my research is not limited to this, a great deal of it, including this, focuses on the activities and attitudes of the government itself. As such, it is not necessary for me to demonstrate the relevance of this particular subject in advance. Additionally, case law states that “proof of the ability to disseminate the released information to a broad cross-section of the public is not required.” Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Dep’t of Justice, 365 F.3d 1108, 1126 (D.C. Cir. 2004); see Carney v. U.S. Dep’t of Justice, 19 F.3d 807, 814-15 (2d Cir. 1994). Further, courts have held that "qualified because it also had “firm” plans to “publish a number of . . . ‘document sets’” concerning United States foreign and national security policy." Under this criteria, as well, I qualify as a member of the news media. Additionally, courts have held that the news media status "focuses on the nature of the requester, not its request. The provision requires that the request be “made by” a representative of the news media. Id. § 552(a)(4)(A)(ii)(II). A newspaper reporter, for example, is a representative of the news media regardless of how much interest there is in the story for which he or she is requesting information." As such, the details of the request itself are moot for the purposes of determining the appropriate fee category. My primary purpose is to inform about government activities by reporting on it and making the raw data available and I therefore request that fees be waived. Per DOJ FOIA guidance, "a requester should be granted a fee waiver if the requested information (1) sheds light on the activities and operations of the government; (2) is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of those operations and activities; and (3) is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester." As this FOIA meets all of those requirements (see above regarding the subject and how I will apply the information), a fee waiver is warranted.
The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.
In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.
Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.
Please find attached a copy our acknowledgement letter regarding your FOIA request below. If you have any questions regarding this email, please feel free to contact me at the number listed below.
Supervisory Government Information Specialist
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
FOI/PA Unit (SARF)
Good Evening Ms. Best:
Please see the attached signed determination letter for the FOIA request that was sent to our office on May 09, 2018. If you have any questions please feel free to contact the GIS Specialist that is listed on your letter or call the mainline number listed below
Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Unit (SARF)
(Desk) 202-307-4006; (fax) 202-307-8556
FOIA/PA Main Phone Line 202-307-7596
I am appealing the integrity of the search, as the non-existence of these documents is inconceivable.
06/27/2018 04:10 PM FOIA Request: DOJ-AP-2018-006213
DOJ-AP-2018-006213 has been processed with the following final disposition: Affirmed on Appeal